The old standby storage tank water heater isn’t going anywhere; it’s still common in households. However, a new interloper, the tankless water heater, is making big inroads in households across the country. Tankless water heating bypasses the main disadvantages of storage-tank water heating while delivering unlimited hot water for as long as you want it.

Old-Style Water Heating

Either heated by gas or electricity, a standard storage-tank water heater fills up a tank–80 gallons for a big household–with water from the household water supply, and then using a heating element, keeps that water hot 24/7. When you need it, the hot water is there for you, provided you don’t ask for more water than can fill the tank.

But that advantage–hot water anytime–comes at a cost. Standby heat loss is common in storage-tank water heaters and is worse in older models that don’t have the benefit of factory-included tank insulation. As the hot water sits in the tank unused, some of that heat transfers through the tank walls. You’re paying to heat water that may never get used.

Tankless Water Heating

Also called on-demand water heating, tankless water heating doesn’t use a tank to store water. Rather, it uses a heating element–again, either gas or electric–to heat water the moment you ask for it. There’s no wasted energy as unused water sits in a tank, getting heated and reheated on demand. The tankless unit will continue heating the water, as long as you need it. This means lower energy bills than a storage-tank model.

Tankless water heating is not without its disadvantages. These systems cost more to install than storage-tank units, especially gas-fueled systems. Second, if you don’t size the tankless water heater correctly, it won’t be able to satisfy many simultaneous uses. Many homeowners combine a whole-house tankless unit with one or more remote, point-of-use units for efficient whole-house water heating.

To learn more about tankless water heating, please contact us at Pipe Works Services We provide superior HVAC and plumbing services to communities in Northern New Jersey.

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